I adore being a coach. Here’s what I love about it. I get to not only stand on the sidelines and ‘coach’ with directions, suggestions, and encouragements; but I also get to get in the game with you. I believe some coaches/mentors are really good at telling you what to do but are not willing to help get you there. I can tell you that you need to cross the street and walk into that store over there, OR I can tell you that AND walk you across the street and open the door for you. The reality of mentoring/coaching is that there are still a lot of managers doing it, not leaders. It takes true leadership to be a coach/mentor. When you hire a coach, you want to see an ROI. You want to get advice and you want to see your life moving forward and start climbing higher and higher, right? You don’t want someone to manage where you are right now – you need someone to lead you into your brighter, more confident future.
When you’re looking for a mentor/coach, you need to find your answer to a very critical question: do you want to stay where you are or move forward?
I make a deal with all of my students for whom I am honored to coach. If they have an issue (oh, it’s important for you to know that we NEVER have an issue or a problem or a crisis – we only have opportunities to react, solve, and improve!) I ask them what is important for them RIGHT NOW. Do they need me to co-sign their B.S. or call them on it? You see, there are times in ALL of our lives when we are comfortable in our struggle and we need someone to recognize that, for right now, we need to stay down. We need to be comfortable in the moment and that time can actually serve us well. It can help us work through emotions, to regroup and recharge before we rise to resolve the issue. Some times what we NEED is for someone to say, “yeah I get it and I’d be seething, too. You are OK to stay where you are and to mourn, or cry, or cuss.”. But shortly thereafter, I will inevitably contact them and simply say, “are you done yet?” And I mean that with all the love and compassion I have but I also never want anyone to stay in those dark places. ALL things can be overcome – you just have to find how HOW. So we work together on calling out the b.s. parts, getting over our own egos, and working THROUGH the issue instead of allowing the issue to tear through us.
If you are considering coach/mentor, ask yourself the qualifying questions, first.
- What do you hope to achieve?
- Are you willing to have your b.s. exposed if necessary?
- Am I fine remaining in my current comfort zone or am I willing to break-out of it?
I wish all of you much success in all your endeavors. Remember, that reaching for your dreams is a verb. It’s action – and it’s always IN action. Your goals and dreams may change as YOU change and grow closer to them and that’s ok. That’s part of the journey. You can’t focus on whether or not you made it to the finish line – you need to focus on the journey, on the trip that gets you there – that’s where the greatest rewards can be found.